A day in the life of Dave during lockdown
How are you?
Well, where do I begin. Lockdown took a particularly serious turn for me three weeks ago. On the 19th April I was taken into hospital rather quickly after suffering a heart attack. I can tell you that I am recovering very well, and back to work, albeit not quite full-time work. At home, there is a balance of kids trying (he says loosely) to get through their schoolwork. Then there is the amount of food kids can eat in a day. Truly amazing. My wife is a doctor and is keeping very busy as you can imagine. So, looking after kids post heart attack, working, and looking after a business……easy!
Oh, currently working through all episodes of Spooks and rekindled my love of Eighties vinyl.
Can you tell us what you are working on?
At DtL Creative we are actually seeing very little reduction in consultancy. As a founder and managing director it’s a massive juggling act at present. I am currently working on supporting the consultants on a number of projects with landlords. We are helping a Housing Association identify a strategy around managed services, systems architecture and hosting. This is a great project as its right back to the fundamentals of looking at quality in services and support, not just the technicalities. As well as this I am taking some time to continue our initiative Blue Banana and with Stewart Davison, our director of Innovation, talking to suppliers and landlords in the area of new tech and how it can be applied to our sector. Then there is the managing director stuff that is way too boring to talk about.
What difficulties does this bring with the current situation and lockdown?
The main difficulty I am seeing at present is the ability to get specific things done. Take training. We are having to look at new ways of doing this, but hey, we are called DtL Creative, and we have come up with some creative and innovative ways of doing this.
There is a definite slow-down in new business, but not significantly as we actually won new business during the lockdown. The first 4 to 6 weeks of lockdown was definitely a case of companies working out how to Keep Calm and Carry On, and this was a great unknown to a great deal of people and companies. However very recently we have seen more of an attitude as to folks simply wanting to get on with things.
Generally, how has work been affected?
Not only personally, but for all of us, travel is nonexistent. This is great. I was travelling what seemed like constantly. It was tiring and not great for health and wellbeing, something I will be looking at with more detail and attention moving forward. In fact, I think we will spend some time evaluating the cost of travel, not just financially, but also on the environment, mental health and time-efficiency.
The work day is now considerably different in so many ways, which brings me to the next answer.
How do you see work patterns developing after we get out of the current restrictions?
The world is now used to talking/engaging on many different collaboration platforms. It’s perhaps now mainstream, so the old challenge of doubting its validity is diluted. Convincing business and the doubters will be easy. However, the challenge will be avoiding the old habits of jumping in a car to go 10 miles or going into an office when there is absolutely no need to. Click of a button and you are interacting with someone visually, sharing desktops, showing presentations, working together on a spreadsheet, you name it. So, it will change for the better, but we will always need to avoid the old habits and also to work on improving the toolset, the bandwidth and training.
I have just had a chat with someone about the way they used to use travel time in a car for ‘thinking’ time. There is no need to stop such practice. Just turn off your phone and tell yourself it’s illegal to use your phone while driving, sorry, having your tea. You could also just go and sit in the car for half an hour, not go anywhere and think while listening to the radio. You can work your way!